2014 Mazda Mazda3 Grand Touring

We like the safety and available options better on the Mazda3.

Both cars are fun to drive. Both cars, when equipped with everything, also can be quite expensive for the size of car they are. But at the end of the day we give the nod to the newer Mazda3 Grand Touring.

Safety technology is important. The Mazda3 earned the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety’s top safety award. In the extremely difficult small overlap crash test, the Mazda3 scored a Good rating while the Ford Focus only scored a Marginal rating.

The amount of standard equipment for the base $26,495 Grand Touring is excellent compared to the Focus, but the Mazda3 starts at approximately $3,000 more. Fully-loaded, the Mazda3 grows that price difference to nearly $5,000. It makes sense that a car that’s more expensive will have more equipment.

But we like the Mazda3 because they give us the choice to get a car with all those features if we want them, or still get a good level of equipment for the price of the Ford.

The looks of the Mazda3 are growing on us, and we definitely would get it in hatchback form and not the sedan. If we were going to buy a car like this today, we’d be looking at both of these vehicles. At the end of the day, we’d choose the Mazda.

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